• Kyodo

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About 90 percent of clinics offering inpatient services nationwide are not equipped with sprinklers, according to a study by the Fire and Disaster Management Agency released Thursday.

The agency reported the finding to a panel studying steps to prevent fires similar to one that broke out at an orthopedic hospital last October in Fukuoka, killing eight elderly patients and two staffers.

More of these small clinics, with total floor space below 6,000 sq. meters, need sprinklers, the panel said. An interim report reflecting the panel’s proposals will be compiled by the end of March.

According to the study, only 416 out of 7,744 clinics with inpatient care had sprinklers as of last October, which means 94.6 percent were without them.

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